Bel Canto Singers to present “Deep Peace” fall concert

Deep Peace Bel Canto Singers concert

The Hesston College Bel Canto Singers will present its fall concert, “Deep Peace,” on Oct. 24 at 2 p.m. at Hesston Mennonite Church.

The program is inspired by this year’s theme verse at Hesston College, Ephesians 4:2-3, in which Paul calls Christians to lift each other up in community: “Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace.”

“The music on this program has common themes of supporting each other and building community,” said director Russell Adrian. “Students were already dealing with many issues related to stress and anxiety that were only multiplied over the past two years due to COVID-19. Now we need to be intentional about how we build positive relationships and, in a way, rebuild our sense of community following so much social distancing.”

The “Deep Peace” program will include a variety of genres, including pieces by the Harrisonburg-based band The Steel Wheels, and the British vocal ensemble VOCES8, who will perform as part of the Sunflower Performing Arts series this February.

“Many of the pieces on this program are what I would consider to be stress relievers,” Adrian said.

The 19-voice mixed chamber choir was selected by competitive auditions. Adrian is in his seventh year as a music faculty member and is director of Bel Canto, Hesston’s top vocal ensemble. All performers are fully vaccinated and will perform without masks. Audience members are required to wear masks.

Bel Canto members include Anna Banman of Lenexa, Kan.; Bethany Masters of Mount Eaton, Ohio; Kelly Miller of Archbold, Ohio; Addy Powers and Isaac Tice of Buhler, Kan.; Rachel Teeter of Hesston, Kan.; Alyssa Burkholder of Goessel, Kan.; Meg Beyer, Kara Longenecker, Ginny Miller, Luke Huyard and Sam Groff of Harrisonburg, Va.; Alyssa Nolt of Dalton, Ohio; Sadie Oesch of Caldwell, Idaho; Luke Allison of Freeman, S.D.; Jack Shingler of Kidron, Ohio; Abraham Cadillo Quispe of Yokohama, Japan; Jesse Kanagy of Lancaster, Pa.; and Aidan Swartzendruber of Henderson, Neb.